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Playlist: Radio for Nature Lovers

Compiled By: PRX Administrator

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Curated Playlist
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Sound Artist Steve Peters: The Subtle Sounds of Nature

From Paul Ingles | 05:46

Sound Artist Steve Peters captures the subtle sounds of nature by patiently recording in central New Mexico

020712stevepeters_small Listening to nature can be an art form. At least it is for sound artist Steve Peters. He spent hours recording in an outdoor space in New Mexico called "The Land," taking care to capture sounds of nature that normally escape our attention. Steve Peters has turned his recordings into a piece that recreates the soundscape of the land in a museum setting. He talked with producer Paul Ingles about the production of "Here-ings." [This piece won the RTNDA Edward R. Murrow award for "Best Use of Sound" in 2003.]

March of the Salamanders

From Adam Allington | 02:51

Every year the first spring rains rouse hibernating amphibians from their winter torpor. In Amherst, MA this time is punctuated by the annual Salamander migrations on Henry Street.

Sala3_small The spotted salamanders commonly seen in New England and the eastern United States are glossy black with two rows of bright yellow spots down their backs and tails. They can crawl up to one mile. One night every spring they leave their underground forest homes and migrate to wetland ponds to breed. In Amherst, Massachusetts, volunteer "bucket brigades" used to stop traffic along Henry Street to carry migrating salamanders safely across the road. That is, until the animals could cross on their own through two underpasses. Originally aired on Weekend Edition Saturday

What Are You Gonna Do with 400 Fish?

From Salt Institute for Documentary Studies | 05:42

C'mon, bait your line. Let's go smelt fishin' on the ice.

Smeltsmeltsinbucket_small Ten shacks on a frozen river are filled with ice fishermen for about ten weeks each year. Owner Steve Leighton provides the bait, his patrons bring the beer, and the fish take care of the rest.

The Tongass National Forest Part One

From Guy Hand | 11:11

The wet and wild nature of Alaska's Tongass National Forest, the largest intact temperate rain forest in the world.

Tongass1_small The first of an award winning two-part show on Alaska's Tongass National Forest. Part One looks at the natural history of the Tongass. (Part Two looks at the contentious legacy of logging on the Tongass.) From the script: "Maybe it's the fluidity of this place, the way the rain softens hard edges, that gives the Tongass a knack for teaching connections: how salmon connect to trees, how trees connect to caves, how an intact, healthy ecosystem flows within itself, cycle within cycle." The Tongass aired on Living On Earth and won first place for Broadcast Feature Reporting in 2002 from the Society of Environmental Journalists.

The Tongass National Forest Part Two

From Guy Hand | 13:56

The contentious legacy of logging on Alaska's Tongass National Forest, the largest intact temperate rain forest in the world.

Dscn0321_small The second of an award winning two-part show on Alaska's Tongass National Forest. Part Two looks at the contentious legacy of logging on the Tongass. (Part One looks at the natural history of the Tongass.) Suggested intro: The Tongass National Forest, America's largest, is a land of both biological wonder and stunning environmental damage. For nearly half a century, large scale logging ruled Southeast Alaska. Unprecedented federal subsidies and lax land-use laws allowed the industry to cut hundreds of thousands of acres of prime old growth forest. Yet after an FBI and EPA raid on one of its pulp mills, after antitrust convictions, after clean air and clean water convictions, after intense critisism by environmental organizations, the the industry's federal contracts were canceled. Today, the Tongass timber industry faces economic collapse. Amid the stumps and failed assumptions, Producer Guy Hand finds a people only beginning to understand what decades of clearcutting has done to the Tongass?a people wondering what to do next. The Tongass aired on Living On Earth and won first place for Broadcast Feature Reporting in 2002 from the Society of Environmental Journalists.

Polar Bears: Branding Global Warming

From Nathanael Johnson | 07:04

Bear as symbol vs. bear in person

Icy_small Lede: What is a polar bear? Okay, sure, it?s a big white member of the Ursus genus, but it?s also a symbol. These days lots of people are thinking of polar bears in terms of what they signify, more than what they actually are. When Time Magazine published a special report on global warming, editors put a polar bear on the cover. Reporter Nathanael Johnson went to find out what it is about polar bears that makes them such ideal poster-animals of global warming. I talk to some real live polar bears and a cute-ologist, then chat up a Sierra Club rep about branding strategy.

Saving the "King of Trees"

From WNPR | 06:51

Profile of a Connecticut scientist who is trying to reintroduce the American chestnut

Chestnut20tree20drawing_small Independent producer Diane Toomey gives us this profile of a Connecticut scientist who is trying to reintroduce the American chestnut. It's based in Connecticut, but is nationally-focused. It would work well as a Health/Science/Environment "E" or "D" segment on Morning Edition, or as part of a local program. Here are some links to sites that could be helpful to you or your listeners: "Chestnuts and the Introduction of Chestnut Blight" American Chestnut Foundation The photo is provided by the Georgia Chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation

The Lord God Bird

From Long Haul Productions | Part of the Song/Story series | 11:57

An innovative story about the rediscovery of the Ivory Billed Woodpecker in Brinkley, Arkansas that blends interviews and an original song by Sufjan Stevens.

3_small Brinkley, Arkansas, is located just a few miles from where the Ivory Billed Woodpecker recently was rediscovered. The Ivory Bill had been thought to be extinct… in fact, the previous confirmed sighting of the bird in the United States was in Louisiana back in 1944, in what was known as the Singer Tract, an area which was clear-cut to make sewing machine boxes, and then ammunition cases and caskets during World War Two. The rediscovery of the Ivory Bill was big news, and brought a ray of hope to the residents of Brinkley. Producers Dan Collison and Elizabeth Meister spoke with people in the town, then shared the interviews with singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens. Collison and Meister were curious about how Stevens writes his songs, which, much like their own work, are filled with stories of places and people. He wrote a song about the Ivory Bill, known as the 'lord god or 'great god' bird. Together, they offer this portrait of Brinkley--and the bird.